Origin of afraidMiddle English affraied, past participle of affraien, affray
This person is afraid.
- The experience of hearing an unfamiliar noise in the middle of the night is an example of afraid.
- The feeling someone gets when realizing they can't pay their mortgage is an example of afraid.
- Filled with fear; frightened: afraid of ghosts; afraid to die; afraid for his life.
- Having feelings of aversion or unwillingness in regard to something: not afraid of hard work; afraid to show emotion.
- Filled with regret or concern. Used especially to soften an unpleasant statement: I'm afraid you're wrong.
Origin of afraidMiddle English affraied past participle of affraien to frighten from Old French esfraier, esfreer to disturb of Germanic origin ; see prī- in Indo-European roots.
(comparative more afraid, superlative most afraid)
From Middle English affrayed, affraied, past participle of afraien (“to affray”), from Anglo-Norman afrayer (“to terrify, disquiet, disturb”), from Old French effreer, esfreer (“to disturb, remove the peace from”), from es- (“ex-”) + freer (“to secure, secure the peace”), from Frankish *friþu (“security, peace”), from Proto-Germanic *friþuz (“peace”), from Proto-Germanic *frijōną (“to free; to love”), from Proto-Indo-European *prāy-, *prēy- (“to like, love”). Compare also afeard. More at free, friend.